Liquor Liability

When businesses such as restaurants and bars serve alcohol to their guests, they can be held liable for injury or damages caused by intoxicated patrons. Even if the guest doesn’t appear to be approaching their limit by the bartender’s observation, injury or damage resulting in a costly lawsuit is possible. Damages seem to know no limit, and wrongful death lawsuits can easily exceed millions of dollars. A standard Commercial General Liability policy contains a liquor liability exclusion, and it will not guard against this risk.

As a matter of sound risk management, the owners of hospitality establishments should not be without a standalone liquor liability policy. The Hospitality and Restaurant team at Mason & Mason has decades of experience in understanding the risks and recommending coverage based on the level of exposure for each unique establishment. We also advise on other measures such as TIPS training as a way to help push down the cost of a liquor liability policy. Finally, our access to top-rated carriers means that we’re able to find great coverage at an optimal price.

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Hospitality Industry & Restaurant Insurance Team

"I’m very grateful for the depth of knowledge possessed by our team at M&M Assurance, and their excellent commitment to customer service. Knowing that they are handling our risk management means I am freed up to focus on our restaurant and our guests."


Nora Mulkern-Bean, The Shannon Door Pub & Restaurant

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Who’s Your Star?

Small and medium-sized businesses often have employees that are “stars.” Sometimes the star is the CEO or president, other times there is a salesperson who consistently outsells every other sales team member by a two to one margin. Maybe you’re a software company that has a star coder whose ideas led to your product being a number one editor’s choice. The point is that most companies have an employee or two that helps their business thrive. What happens to your business in the short-term if a star employee, referred to by the insurance industry as a “key man,” dies?

According to a study conducted by the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), only 22% of small businesses carry this type of coverage.

Death is an issue that most people do not like discussing, so many small and medium-sized businesses do not have detailed succession plans, and key person life insurance remains an unresolved issue. It is a discussion that helps your company survive the difficult times that can follow the death of a key person.

What is Key Person Life Insurance?

Key man life insurance protects a business from economic loss relating to the death of a key employee. The company buys the insurance, owns the policy, and is the beneficiary of the policy in the event of the sudden death of the insured. Payment from the insurance company to the business is a lump sum, and there are no restrictions on how the company can use the money. Most companies use the money to stabilize the business until they find the key person’s replacement.

Types of Key man Life Insurance

Businesses gravitate to two kinds of policies for key employee life insurance.

Term Life Insurance. Startups favor this type of policy. Startups always try to conserve cash, term life insurance is cheaper than any other kind of personal life insurance.

Policies that build cash value. Whole life or universal life insurance builds cash value that increases the cash value of the policy and is an asset on the company’s book. The company can get access to the excess cash value of the policy at any time for any purpose since the money from the cash buildup belongs to them.

Life insurance premiums vary between companies and smart companies comparison shop for the best insurance program.

The discussion is uncomfortable, but if you do not have key man insurance, it’s worth talking about.